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Peter Brackley

I was so upset to learn of the passing of Peter Brackley aged 67 last night. You would not call him old school as a commentator – he commented on Channel 4’s innovatory Football Italia – but he belonged to a previous non Premier league era. Always a Brighton fanatic he contributed an entertaining column to the local paper The Argus often drawing from his stories of mixing the great and good mixed up with his unalloyed support of Brighton.

On TV it is often a bad career move to “large it” in displaying support of your team.

Jim Rosenthal never really recovered when on TV after the League Cup victory of his beloved Oxford United by putting on a bull helmet with horns (the symbol of Oxford known as the Bulls).

One of the best football presenters Jeff Stelling supports Hartlepool but maybe because his team are hardly top table it’s part of his charm and repertoire.

But back to Peter. Channel 4 was innovative in its sports department in the 90s, when they had few mainstream rights, by promoting cycling, Italian football and US gridiron soccer.

James Richardson – a fluent and entertaining presenter – fronted Football Italia and Peter Brackley, working on the Italian TV feedback here, was the commentator. He had to mug up on Italian football and did well.

Later he spread his wings in a cabaret act with the BBC’s Gary Richardson, the voice of Jimmy Greaves on Spitting Image and the voice on electronic video games. He was much liked. He still had much to offer. We shall all miss him in the Amex sports world and beyond.

About Tom Hollingworth

Tom Hollingsworth is a former deputy sports editor of the Daily Express. For many years he worked in a sports agency, representing mainly football players and motor racing drivers. Tom holds a private pilot’s licence and flying is his principal recreation. More Posts